By Steve Kovacs (Introduction by Chuck Gibson)

LOVELAND, OH (January 18, 2024) – Today’s edition of Fun with Maps takes us to the basin of a dried up lake.

White Dunes

Here is a great example of the evolving planet.

Shallow lakes dried up as the ice age receded starting about 12,000 years ago.  The nearby mountains rich in gypsum were then eroded by the wind, carrying the white gypsum to the basin, where it took on a sand-like appearance over time.

The result is the White Sands National Park.  It became a National Monument on January 18, 1933 and was “promoted” to a National Park in December, 2019.

Despite its barren looks, about 45 species are endemic to the park – only found here on earth.  Most are invertebrates, and primarily moths.

The White Sands National Park is also unique in that one must travel through one of two military installations to get there – Holloman Air Force Base or White Sands Missile Range.

Cram issued this map of New Mexico in 1885.

New Mexico in 1885

Steve Kovacs and his wife Theresa reside in Loveland, Ohio where they raised their two children. He is a passionate collector of antique maps.

Visit his antique map boutique world-on-paper online. Watch for his daily feature Steve Kovacs: Fun with Maps here on Loveland Beacon.